Kids must be taught how to think, not what to think.
Today our son, Mac, started Kindergarten. The experience of dropping him off for his very first day of school struck so many emotions in me. As every parent of a school-age child can attest, the very first day of school is a learning experience in and of itself. It’s one of those little milestones you anticipate and always remember.
Anyway, I awoke this morning thinking about the whole experience—of childhood, parenthood, and everything in between—and two thoughts immediately came to mind:
- How in the world did Angel and I suddenly become parents to a kindergartner? Whoa! Time flies!
- There are so many things I want to tell Mac as soon as possible, before he’s in high school with his friends and too cool to hear my little nuggets of wisdom. And before Angel and I go from “mommy and daddy who both know best” to “mom and dad who couldn’t possibly understand.”
So in no particular order, here are 40 things I intend to tell him and his little friends, repeatedly, over the next several years:
- Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. – Don’t base your attitude on how things are. Choose your attitude so it supports and expresses the way you wish to be. Frustration and stress come from the way you respond and react, not the circumstance themselves. Adjust your attitude, and the frustration and stress is gone.
- What you experience starts with your perception. – In almost every case, nothing is stopping you… nothing is holding you back but your own thoughts about yourself and “how life is.” Your perception creates your beliefs. And your beliefs create your behaviors. And your behaviors produce your experience.
- Let go of the need to complain about life. – Spend your moments actually living its beauty. Change the phrase “have to” to “get to.” So many things we complain about are things others wish they had the chance to do.
- Positivity always pays off. – Your thoughts do not end when you finish thinking them. They continue to echo through your life. Choose wisely and intentionally. Be outrageously and unreasonably positive. Be funny and creative and ridiculous and joyful all at the same time. Smile as often as possible. A smile actually changes the vibe of your body. It alters, physiologically, the chemistry of your being. It will make you feel better and do better.
- Negativity just shortens your life. – Before you waste it on anger, resentment, spite or…